Minister of Defense of Latvia Artis Pabriks announced today, August 15, that four helicopters have been donated to the Ukrainian Air Force. The statement was published on his and the ministry's accounts on Twitter.
"The Stingers sent half a year ago helped delay the Russian invasion. Now, as Ukrainian soldiers counterattack in many places, our donated helicopters will help carry out military operations and save lives!" minister Pabriks said.
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Defense Express notes, that both these helicopters can serve as transportation and landing carriers as well as combat support aircraft when equipped with guns. Still, Mi-17 is a larger helicopter with more capabilities. For instance, the maximum takeoff weight is 13,000 kg (Mi-17) vs. 3,550 kg (Mi-2A1), payload capacity is 1,200 kg vs. 4,000 kg respectively. Mi-17 can take on board up to 24 soldiers and 3 crewmen, while Mi-2 accommodates at most 9 people (including crew).
The speed also differs: 250km/h and 225km/h are Mi-17's maximum and cruise speeds respectively, while for Mi-2 these specifications are 220 km/h and 200 km/h. However, mi-2 is two times lesser in length than Mi-17, so the latter pays with its visibility for better performance.
Anyway, both these aircraft have been used by Ukrainian Air Force during their missions. For instance, the aforementioned Mi-2A1 were purchased from a Ukrainian manufacturer for the evacuation of wounded troops from the battlefield. And the Mi-8 helicopters, which are essentially the base version for the modernized Mi-17, got on a video using heavy S-13 missiles before.
Read more: Mi-17 Helicopters Finally Go to Ukraine (Photos)